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Thread: 1955 Flatt and Scruggs

  1. #1

    Default 1955 Flatt and Scruggs

    Nice story about Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs going back to 1955 in Huntington, WV.

  2. #2

    Default Re: 1955 Flatt and Scruggs

    Here's the photo and story published in and courtesy of the Herald-Dispatch, Huntington, WV

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Music historians view the duo of singer and guitarist Lester Flatt and banjo player Earl Scruggs as
    one of the premier bluegrass groups in the history of the genre. The two originally had been
    members of Bill Monroe’s band, the Bluegrass Boys. In early 1948, they left to form their own
    band, the Foggy Mountain Boys.

    Although there were many factors that contributed to the success of Flatt and Scruggs, television
    was one of the most significant. Television gave them unprecedented exposure and name

    According to bluegrass expert Richard F. Thompson, Feb. 2, 1955, was the first time Flatt and
    Scruggs appeared on their own television program. That first live show, sponsored by Martha
    White Flour, was aired from the Huntington studio of WSAZ-TV.

    Thompson writes that within weeks of that first appearance, Flatt and Scruggs had begun doing
    weekly live programs in three Tennessee towns — Knoxville, Johnson City and Jackson. Later they
    added still more southern cities, logging as many as 2,500 miles a week as they drove their bus
    from town to town for the live programs.

    With the advent of video recording, the band was able to park their bus and record just one
    program at WSMV-TV in Nashville, and then distribute it to multiple markets.

    Flatt and Scruggs had a distinctive sound that won them many fans. In 1955, they became
    members of the Grand Ole Opry. Over the years, Scruggs began experimenting on duets with
    saxophonist King Curtis and adding songs by the likes of Bob Dylan to the group’s repertoire.
    Flatt, a traditionalist, did not like these changes, and the group broke up in 1969.

    Following the breakup, Lester Flatt founded the Nashville Grass and Scruggs led the Earl Scruggs
    Revue. Flatt died in 1979. Scruggs died in 2012. The duo was elected to the Country Music Hall of
    Fame in 1985.

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